Wednesday, October 31

a bridge of light

The spirit-world around this world of sense
   Floats like an atmosphere, and everywhere
Wafts through these earthly mists and vapors dense
   A vital breath of more ethereal air.

Our little lives are kept in equipoise
   By opposite attractions and desires;
The struggle of the instinct that enjoys,
   And the more noble instinct that aspires.

These perturbations, this perpetual jar
   Of earthly wants and aspirations high,
Come from the influence of an unseen star,
   An undiscovered planet in our sky.

And as the moon from some dark gate of cloud
   Throws o'er the sea a floating bridge of light,
Across whose trembling planks our fancies crowd
   Into the realm of mystery and night,—

So from the world of spirits there descends
   A bridge of light, connecting it with this,
O'er whose unsteady floor, that sways and bends,
   Wander our thoughts above the dark abyss.

-- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, from "Haunted Houses"

"Haunted Houses"